Andris Nelsons.


Andris Nelsons conducts Richard Strauss

In this year of Richard Strauss’ 150th birthday, it seems natural that the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) under conductor Andris Nelsons should add a candle to Strauss’ birthday cake.

On this CD, the CBSO and its music director offer us a selection of the early tone poems: ‘Don Juan’, ‘Till Eulenspiegel‘ and ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’.

We hear the following selections:

Strauss, R:

  • Also sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30
  • Don Juan, Op. 20

Performed by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Andris Nelsons conducting.

In ‘Don Juan’, Strauss combined big tunes and orchestral virtuosity with a dash of immorality and wacky humor. Nelsons and the CBSO delight in the Don’s life of adventure and conquest that comes to a sticky end.

The climax to ‘Till Eulenspiegel’, with the hanging of the protagonist, is preceded by a witty exploration of just about every possible orchestral sound, with Strauss pulling out all the stops to depict Till’s merry pranks.

The world-class CBSO, with the virtuosity of all the sections of the orchestra, is just what’s needed for the great Strauss composition, ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’.

Here is Strauss’ “Ein Heldenleben”, with Andris Nelsons conducting the Berliner Philharmoniker:



And next, here is Andris Nelsons leading the CBSO in one of Strauss’ most seductive heroines, “Salome”:



Tags: Richard Strauss, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Andris Nelsons, Also Sparach Zarathustra, Till Eulenspiegel